BY OLUFISOYE ADENITAN
While the advent of social media has brought about transformation to information dissemination, it has also posed serious challenges to the credibility of news reportage and the mainstream media.
An instance is The ENDSARS protest in Nigeria which started on the microblog “Twitter” where a video emerged of the men of the Special Anti Robbery Squad SARS dragging a man from his vehicle and mishandling him
This video caught the attention of Nigerians especially youths and the endsars protest started online with different Hastags ,until the protest gathered physical momentum in Lagos and other parts of the country .
In many other cases , fake Videos or news links have surfaced online misleading the public and such could only be dispelled when they are fact checked .
This is a serious challenge to media organization on the need for them to be on top of their game.
Of more importance however is the concern for internet freedom and protection of citizens online rights through information integrity and community resilience.
Section 39 of the Nigeria constitution provides every person shall be entitled to freedom of expression including freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart ideas and information without interference.
According to the co founder of the Nigerian Digital rights lawyers initiative, Barrister Solomon Okedara, a resilient digital rights community against increasing draconian law reforms targeting digital rights and internet freedom was important for citizens freedom of expression.
He was of the belief that internet was a potent tools to mobilize and raise consciousness of citizens against abuse of power by Government.
It is also worthy to note that the institute for Media and society and the global Network Defending and promoting free expression ,IFex promotes and engages the international and national policy trends on digital rights and information integrity for hygienic social media space and habits for citizens .